Repairing our wounds is an ongoing process often happening in micro doses vs. a big action.
My dad’s passing is still something I am working to fully integrate. I do little things to heal the wound because fully immersing myself in the pain and knowing of my reality is too overwhelming.
My father used to catch cicadas for my brother and me during our childhood summers. I often awoke to the chitters and chatters of cicadas in the mornings. I’d walk downstairs in anticipation, fingers crossed that he caught me a cicada.
Oh the joy when I was greeted by a large eyed insect with its beautiful iridescent exoskeleton. On our lucky days, he was able to catch one for my brother and one for me.
My dad would carefully loop a long piece of thread around its body, tie the thread and hand us the loose end of it. We would fly our cicadas around the living room having to gently take them off the lace curtains when they landed, encouraging them to take flight again. And then, before lunch, we would cut the threads off and release them back to the wild.
These are my sweetest memories of my dad.
When I was getting married, I tried to think of a way to have him there with me physically. I immediately thought of cicadas and a little brainstorming led me to decide on adding a brooch of a cicada to my bouquet. Of course, I had no idea if such a thing even existed!
An Etsy search showed more than a dozen results. I decided on a gold colored one.
Before those first steps down the aisle, I don’t think I ever felt his absence greater. Holding all of my emotions, I touched the brooch as I looped my arm in my mother’s and we walked down the aisle together.
For eight years, the brooch stayed on my bouquet which was stored in a vase on my bookshelf. It was inexpertly dried and had gathered too much dust. I decided it was time to part with it. Being the helper she is, my mother bagged the dried flowers and threw them in the garbage.
It took a couple of days before I realized that she’d done that. My heart stopped as I realized the cicada was still on the ribbon of the bouquet.
I rushed out to the garbage can, felt around for the bag and rescued the brooch.
I wanted to invite this cicada into my everyday and saw the perfect place on my lamp next to my desk, where I arguably spend more time than anywhere else in the house.
And so here it is, adorning my lamp, reminding me of my dad in micro doses and slowly giving me the courage to do things like share this story.